Low Awareness of Diabetes as a Major Risk Factor for Cardiovascular Disease in Middle- and High-income Countries
Awareness of diabetes as a major risk factor for cardiovascular disease (CVD) may enhance uptake of screening for diabetes and primary prevention of CVD.
Research Design and Methods:
The American Heart Association conducted an online survey in 50 countries. The main outcome of this study was the proportion of individuals in each country who recognized diabetes as a CVD risk factor. We also examined variation by gender, age, geographic region, and country-level economic development.
Among 48,988 respondents, 15,747 (32.1%) identified diabetes as a major CVD risk factor. Awareness was similar among men and women, but increased with age, and was greater in high-income than in middle-income countries.
Two-thirds of adults in surveyed countries did not recognize diabetes as a major CVD risk factor. Given the increasing global burden of diabetes and CVD, this finding underscores the need for concerted efforts to raise public health awareness.